Broken Lizard, the brains behind Super Troopers and Club Dread is a comedy team of five friends based in New York and Los Angeles. The team consists of Jay Chandrasekhar, Kevin Heffernan, Steve Lemme, Paul Soter, and Erik Stolhanske.
The five met at Colgate University in upstate New York, where Jay was asked to put together a sketch comedy group for the school. The newly assembled team, "Charred Goosebeak", performed their original shows and sketches at Colgate and other universities. Though the five core members stayed together after graduation, they had to leave their name behind. Upon their arrival in New York City, they were officially "Broken Lizard", and they performed onstage to welcoming audiences in shows such as "Fishwhimsey" and "The Return of the Biscuit Champion".
In 1994 they produced a 30 minute feature called The Tinfoil Monkey Agenda, a Monty Python-style comedy which was praised on the festival circuit for its successful integration of film narrative and sketch comedy. On the strength of their first success they produced their first feature film, Puddle Cruiser, directed by Jay and released in 1997. It was shown at several festivals, including Sundance, the Independant Feature Film Market (IFFM), SXSW, the London and Berlin Inernational Film Festivals, and the Hampton International FIlm Festival where it received the grand prize for best film. Though the movie was never picked up for distribution, it was well received and hailed by critics, including Entertainment Weekly who called it "the most sheerly entertaining movie at the 1997 Sundance Film Festival." After touring college campuses to distribute the film themselves, they began to shop around for producers for their next film. Based on their critical acclaim (and a friend's retired Wall Street father), they got the backing to make another movie.
Super Troopers (2001) was the team's first big hit. While it performed only adequately on the big screen, after it hit video it began to amass a huge fan base as word spread. Broken Lizard had shown that left to their own devices, and with Jay in the hot seat, they could produce quality comedy that appealed to everyone.
As for the latest news, tonight is release night for their newest project, Club Dread. The movie stars the Broken Lizard team, as always, with a little help from Bill Paxton (Twister, A Simple Plan), and details the violent deaths of several Caribbean vacationers at a hedonistic beach resort. If their past work is any indication, it should be hilarious.